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Serialisation and Book Publication

"The Silent Sea"note was serialised, under the pseudonym " 'Antarlo,' author of 'An Australian Girl' ", in the weekly Adelaide Observer and its companion daily paper the Evening Journal from 2 April to 3 December 1892, and in the Melbourne Age from 2 April 1892 to 14 January 1893.note The Adelaide and Melbourne newspapers maintained simultaneity for the first few chapters but then divided the material into instalments to suit their own needs.note In reviewing the Bentley edition in December 1892 Catherine Helen Spence remarked that the novel had already been read "not only in its native province in the Evening Journal and Observer, but by the far more numerous readers of the Melbourne Age and Leader".note Her reference to "the Age and Leader" is ambiguous, but "The Silent Sea" was not serialised in the Leader (the companion weekly to the Age), and it does not appear to have been Syme's practice to run a serial simultaneously in both papers.

As mentioned earlier, Syme had apparently stipulated that publication of the three-volume edition be deferred until the serialisation was halfway through (this point was reached, in the Age, on 20 August). Bentley himself proposed to postpone it further, "until the first week of September as during August in England everyone is away from London".note In the event, the


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Bentley edition appeared on 21 September 1892, at the standard price of thirty-one shillings and sixpence, under the pseudonym "Mrs. Alick Macleod".note It was included in the catalogue of Mudie's Circulating Library in January 1893.note

In the last quarter of 1892 Bentley also bought from Martin (for £10) the half-share she had originally retained in the American rights to the novel, the whole of these rights then being purchased from Bentley (for £20) by the New York publishing house, Harper and Brothers. On 26 November 1892 Harper published their own one-volume fifty-cent paperback edition of the novel, under the same pseudonym, as No. 728 of their Franklin Square series. Interest in producing an American edition was also expressed by another publisher, Rand McNally, who apparently refused, however, to meet Bentley's request for $50 as a nominal payment for "the authors rights". In response Bentley pointed out that "of course if you feel free to disregard the moral rights of people you can remit the book without any acknowledgment whatsoever, owing to the action of the United States Government in standing aloof from the Convention of Berne, (by which protection is accorded to literary property irrespective of Nationality)".note No evidence of a Rand McNally edition of The Silent Sea has been found, and, although the Observer announced, on 24 December 1892, that a "cheaper Australian edition" was forthcoming from Bentley (p. 41), no further edition of the novel appeared.

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